My question is simply, if we are telling people to eliminate the NADs (neolithic agents of disease): primarily gluten and vegetable oils, then why are some of us going right ahead and saying it's OK to eat hormone- and antibiotic-laden meat & dairy?
The health impact is likely just as staggering, given the high rates of antibiotic resistance and the still unknown impact of a couple generations raised in a xenoestrogen soup, primarily caused by CAFO operations, (as well as the prevalence of plastics and BCPs in the water supply.)
Fertility rates fell more rapidly from 2007 through 2009 than for any 2-year period in more than 30 years. In my work in the birth world, I am seeing many women in their late 20s and early 30s with fertility problems--is this partly due to the CAFO meat?
Are we doing ourselves and our children a disservice by calling CAFO meat Paleo?
Have you watched the FRESH movie? Free to watch on this link through tomorrow.
ETA: Thanks for your feedback so far!
I think the question could also be rephrased as: Should we encourage folks who can't afford grassfed/free-range meat to eat CAFO meat, or find a healthier and affordable option, like free-range eggs/dairy, wild caught fish and (gasp) properly prepared organically-grown legumes?
ETA2: I edited my question, thanks to Matt!
Of course it's not. But when it comes down to paleo with CAFO meat vs SAD with CAFO meat, the choice is obvious. Don't let perfection get in the way of improvement.
EDIT: I see the question has been modified a bit. Though I don't think my answer above changes. Obviously paleo food is better than non-paleo food. (Whether paleo food must be organic/grass-fed/insert-buzzword-here is debateable!) Is wild-caught salmon better than CAFO beef? It really is hard to say, because one is beef and one is salmon. Is an apple better than an orange?
In an ideal world we would all be eating organic, pasture raised animals, free from hormones and other chemical nasties. Unfortunately it's not an ideal world and not everyone has the luxury of being able to afford the, lets face it, really expensive meats! I would be worried that by being too judgemental we could be ostracising people who could really benefit by reintroducing meat into their diet, or simply just by cutting grains and vegetable oils. I think it's great to get the information out there to eat only humanely sourced meats and I support that cause fully. What I feel uncomfortable with is making people with almost no money feel guilty about the choices they have to make temporarily. Hopefully when situations for people improve, they can make even better changes, but in my humble opinion, any step in the right direction is a good one.
I think we do the best that we can do to get by. Cost is a factor for many people, and eliminating many of what was previously considered filler foods (pasta, bread etc.) which is much cheaper to feed a family on can create a budget pinch in order to feed a family.
I know personally we do as much as we can - we buy our fruit and veggies from a local organic co-op, we buy our beef, lamb, pork and turkey from a local organic farmer and we also buy fish from a community supported fishery, but sometimes our order runs out, and up here in Canada buying organic meat is INSANE expensive from the grocery stores, and we can't afford to do it. So I'll buy CAFO meat (however, in Canada I think the CAFO meat is a bit better than in the US).
I definitely think it is more important to get rid of processed foods and grains first. And I definitely think that we should all support local food.
But I really don't like labelling things as paleo or not. Me no likey paleo cops
If the most basic premise of Paleo is grain-avoidance, then by eating CAFO garbage, you are not avoiding grains.
As a side benefit, if everyone who is Paleo was able to vote with our dollars and buy only grassfed beef, it would be a significant economic boost to the independent farms that supply it, and send a clear message to the Industrial "Food" giants of the world. In a very simple view of things, grassfed is more expensive, because there isn't much demand for it. Demand it.
People need to get over themselves. Do the best you can for you and your family. If thats whats available to you and as long as your avoiding gluten, processed sugars, vegetables and legumes your healthier than 99 percent of the population.
Short answer: no. But that's a paleo-puritan idealistic answer.
One could make an argument, and best if scientific tests were done, that there is some "paleo-inspired" benefits to eliminating grains (primary sourced) although still eating CAFO meats that were fed unnatural, grain-based diets (sourced secondarily). The question I'd be curious to answer is if the benefits of the removal of the active, negative agents (e.g. gliadin) is as much or stronger of a healthy change that continuing exposure to high levels of Omega-6 is deleterious.
For me, I consider CAFO meat (and seafood like farm-raised and any US shrimp) my "cheat food". I avoid it mostly, but when out and about (like when I was on vacation in Omaha -- pretty much the grain-fed capital of the US), my friends and I had some pretty great-tasting, totally evil CAFO steaks.
CAFO meat is not "Paleo" per se...yes its fatty meat, but those unhappy cows dont make for GOOD fatty meat. You are more than what you eat, but how your food was produced as well. A carrot is a carrot is a carrot right?! Wrong. Theres a difference in a conventional carrot grown in ground thats been contaminated in comparison to a "conventional" carrot grown at a local farm. Same goes for the beef. I, too, cannot afford Grassfed meats so I go for the less expensive hormone and antibiotic free meats. Auburn University has a co-op where the animals are not given hormones, antibiotics, or other crap, are pastured their entire lives (see them every day going to and from campus) AND grain fed. While not nearly as bad as CAFO meat, its still grainfed. The cows are happy, and I feel like that will play a lot into the quality of the meat (the steaks are DELICIOUS. Tender and juicy with just enough fat to blacken and enjoy at the end ;])I bought about 20 pounds of meat yesterday (chicken, beef, and pork) for about $45 dollars. If you live anywhere near an agriculture university, check and see if they have a co-op...maybe a local farmer would have cheap, good quality grass and grainfed cows?
No, absolutely not.
As mentioned above by eating CAFO meat you are not avoiding grain.
As well as the fact that CAFO meat represents everything which is wrong with our species. Its absolutely fucking disgusting.
Anyone who says its ok has never been inside, I have, and its EXACTLY like those horrible Vegan videos show you.
The only protein from animals I had was sustainably caught seafood (such as sardines and canned salmon) and pastured eggs until I found grassed beef (certified humane) at a reasonable price. I think CAFO meat is disgusting, from a health and ethical standpoint. It can easily be done if someone budgets with planning. Grassfed beef is great, but if you can't afford it, I think "safer" proteins in the meantime is just something you should do, at least for the majority of it. I'm mostly bothered by the torture of CAFO animals so I may be biased. I don't want to put that in my body.
I would give up cable, that extra shirt I might buy, eating out, walk a little longer to save on gas etc. to be able to afford quality meat.
The question should be, is CAFO-based paleo the healthiest option for that budget? Every aspect of modern paleo eating is tempered by an acknowledgment that paleo foods aren't available to us in their original form. If the meat isn't healthy, is it better to eat more meat or should we look more to subsist on pulses. I know which of those has a stronger historic tradition.